The collaboration between Deakin University and Xefco seeks to explore the possibility of a waterless manufacturing process in the dyeing process of jeans. The innovative technology at the heart of this endeavour is known as ‘Ausora.’

Supported by a generous $50m grant from the Australian Government’s inaugural Trailblazer Universities Programme, along with contributions from industry partners and the university, the Reach initiative boasts a total project value of $380m. Its overarching goal is to facilitate the development of greener supply chains while catalysing business success.

Associate professor Alessandra Sutti, from Deakin’s Institute for Frontier Materials, said: “If successful, the Ausora technology, which colours fabrics without the need for large quantities of water, will put us a step closer to more efficient and sustainable clothing manufacturing.”

Xefco’s CEO, Tom Hussey, noted that the company’s new pilot plant, located at Deakin University in Geelong, will undergo extensive testing using various materials, including specialised fabrics like waterproof textiles used in outdoor jackets and jeans.

Hussey outlined the broader vision behind the technology and said: ” This is the first stage of Xefco’s vision for the technology, with the REACH project focused on demonstrating the commercial viability of the technology at pilot scale and developing processes so it can be scaled up for commercial production.”

The pilot plant established by Xefco is strategically located alongside Deakin researchers at ManuFutures, a state-of-the-art advanced manufacturing hub situated at Deakin’s Waurn Ponds campus.

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